(The Eagle’s Gift by Carlos Castaneda)
He told me that he was going to reveal to me a practical maneuver of the second attention, and right then he turned into a luminous egg. He reverted back to his normal appearance and repeated this transformation three or four more times. I understood perfectly well what he was doing. He did not need to explain it to me and yet I could not put into words what I knew.
Silvio Manuel smiled, cognizant of my problem. He said that it took an enormity of strength to let go of the intent of everyday life. The secret that he had just revealed was how to expedite letting go of that intent. In order to do what he had done, one must place one’s attention on the luminous shell.
He turned one more time into a luminous egg and then it became obvious to me what I had known all along. Silvio Manuel’s eyes turned for an instant to focus on the point of the second attention. His head was straight, as if he had been looking ahead of him, only his eyes were askew. He said that a warrior must evoke intent. The glance is the secret. The eyes beckon intent.
I became euphoric at that point. I was at long last capable of thinking about something I knew without really knowing. The reason why seeing seems to be visual is because we need the eyes to focus on intent. Don Juan and his party of warriors knew how to use their eyes to catch another aspect of intent and called this act seeing. What Silvio Manuel had shown me was the true function of the eyes, the catchers of intent.
I then used my eyes deliberately to beckon intent. I focused them on the point of the second attention. All of a sudden don Juan, his warriors, dona Soledad, and Eligio were luminous eggs, but not la Gorda, the three little sisters, and the Genaros. I kept on moving my eyes back and forth between the blobs of light and the people, until I heard a crack in the base of my neck, and everybody in the room was a luminous egg.
I felt for an instant that I could not tell them apart, but then my eyes seemed to adjust and I held two aspects of intent, two images at once. I could see their physical bodies and also their luminosities. The two scenes were not superimposed on each other but separate, and yet I could not figure out how. I definitely had two channels of vision, and seeing had everything to do with my eyes and yet was independent of them. I could still see the luminous eggs, but not their physical bodies when I closed my eyes.
I had at one moment the clearest sensation that I knew how to shift my attention to my luminosity. I also knew that to revert to the physical level all I had to do was to focus my eyes on my body.